A lot of people have an old VHS collection gathering dust, or content that was purchased on their gaming device that must be kept on that device. What does it really take to get this content on to a DVD? Not much.
Using a hardware video trans-coder, such as the ADS DVD-ExpressDX2 (does not work with Vista or later without software issues), a DVD+/-RW Drive and an external HDD for portability, converting a video collection as fast as you can play them (even direct to DivX) is pretty simple.
So what is really needed for minor work such as converting your video collection to digital format?
A computer meeting the minimum standards of your capture device, the capture device, DVD+/-RW and an external HDD (if you want to carry your movies with you).
The components used for this article were the ASUS N270 NetBook, ADS DVD-ExpressDX2, a Lite-On external DVD-RW and a WD 500GB External HDD. This setup is affordable, extremely portable and flexible.
Working with home videos may necessitate a higher end device and better than bundled software, this example is great for the basics only.
Capturing movies will take some time. The included software may not have a timer option and therefore it may be necessary to be present to stop the video and recording manually.
Below are pictures of the setup and the process of simple video capture and DVD creation with the included Cap Wiz utility.
First, all hardware needs to be brought together and hooked up.
Next, go with the flow. The process is fairly simple and all of the tasks are pretty straight forward as far as getting content on the disk.
That is about it. Though hardware and the bundled software vary, most stick to basics in line with what is above. If you want to get your movies off of the VHS and more… then this is the only way to do it without breaking the bank. Just remember, if you are a novice you should read plenty of reviews and tailor your purchase to your needs. Many retailers have user reviews of the products that can be very helpful. Just remember, even when a product gets some bad reviews, that does not necessarily indicate that there is something wrong with the product. It is usually a user error…like the user not reading the manual. I always read the manuals as a last resort.
The features of the DX2 capture device are:
Effortlessly Save & Share Memories on DVD or CD
Transfer video from VHS tapes, digital or analog camcorders directly
to DVD or CD*
Real-Time hardware conversion produces the best DVD quality results
Make Movies for your Sony PSP, Apple iPod or Zen Vision!
Capture audio and video via the USB port to your computer hard drive or “Direct to Disc” (C6666D or DVD disc)
Capture video directly to popular video formats; DVD (MPEG-2), SVCD, VCD (MPEG-1), MPEG-4.
Capture directly to Sony PSP video and Apple iPod video formats
Use the Included CapWiz application for easy video capture direct to your desired video compression format
Record to your computer hard drive or “Direct to Disc”
Exclusive Hardware Encoding chip inside DVD Xpress creates the highest quality video without putting extra strain on your PC
The DX2 is available here.
Some of the features of the bundled software (Ulead VideoStudio™ 9 SE DVD) are:
Features and Benefits
• Movie Wizard is ideal for users new to video editing. Select from 30+ theme styles to get started then let auto-editing make the first edits. Have complete movies with only three steps. Use the new auto pan & zoom to help create entertaining photo slideshows.
• VideoStudio Editor is complete with all the powerful tools needed to produce great-looking home movies while using an intuitive, step-by-step workflow. Spend time being creative rather than learning the program.
Full product description: http://www.ulead.com/events/ati/UVS9_FB_SE_DVD_062405.pdf
This is an older version and newer versions usually have more features. I wont complain as it was a bundle.
Do realize that this is a low end model and it is all that I needed. The prices and features are varied as is the bundled software. I would advise reading reviews and comparing features so that you get the device that best meets your needs.
Just as a little side note: Why do I use a NetBook? Portability! I have kids and when we travel, movies keep them happy. With a 160GB HDD, that is a lot of content to keep them happy. Sure you can buy one of those All-in-one 10 inch portable DVD players for $179, but compared to $249 for the netbook (that will allow you to watch streaming content in the hotel, check your e-mail, update your social networking site and the like, in addition to watching stored movies); I just see the DVD player as a waste of money.